Psychotogen The Calculus of Evil

A sure-fire purchase for all prog-death fans, The Calculus of Evil from Maryland’s Psychotogen certainly comes out of leftfield since one would naturally expect another death/grind band from their pedigree (former Pessimist and Misery Index members). Instead, the band offers unbelievable classical guitar pieces alongside steaming slabs of death metal that merge equal amounts of Aghora-styled progressive rock and Burnt By the Sun-y hardcore. "Might Is Right” and "The Gilded Slave” contain Broken Hope-like death guitar leads and shimmering acoustic interludes à la Novembers Doom. "Den of Wolves” and the staggering "Lying In Wait/The Calculated Evil” are full-on, Sadus-deferent death, while "Thy Will Be Done” sounds like Witchery covering a Botch tune. The John McLaughlin-styled instrumental "The Poison Sleep” is so steeped in Spanish guitar that you’ll immediately crave tapas and sangría. "Descending” brandishes sparing Iron Maiden chordage (circa Piece of Mind) amid Cynic-al tempo gymnastics. Even a bonus cover of Judas Priest’s "All Guns Blazing” barely approaches the sheer mastery contained within the originals. Psychotogen’s efforts are commensurate with their rewards, and The Calculus of Evil hits all the bases for the most discerning metalheads. (Crash)